Our History

JAG Founders and Leaders – Marty Shultz, Cathy McKee Oleson, Carolyn Warner and Ken Smith with student leaders David Rodriguez and Ashley Rodriguez.
JAG Programming began in 1979, when the Governor of Delaware started a School-to-Work Transition Program to answer the high percentage of underemployed and unemployed high school graduates. Along with business, community and education leaders, the JAG Senior Program began in 8 schools and Jobs for America’s Graduates was established in 1980.

Since then, Jobs for America’s Graduates has grown into a state-based national non-profit organization currently operating programs in 39 states. Arizona adopted the Jobs for America’s Graduates Model for high school seniors in 1980. In 1990, Jobs for Arizona’s Graduates established as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.

In four decades of operation, JAG has delivered consistent, compelling results – helping nearly three-quarters of a million young people stay in school through graduation, pursue post-secondary education and secure quality entry-level jobs leading to career advancement opportunities.

Over the past 40 years, over 40,000 young people have received JAG services in Arizona and gone on to become accountants, nurses, teachers, business owners, fire fighters and elected government officials.

Today, JAG has 30 programs in Arizona serving over 1,300 students and is consistently exceeding the national standards set by Jobs for America’s Graduates. All JAG programs are based on the evidenced-based national model developed by Jobs for America’s Graduates. JAG Arizona is consistently exceeding the JAG National Standards, and continues to be recognized for outstanding performance in the network.

Through the Years – Celebrating Our Past, Present and Future
Jobs for Arizona’s Graduates has served more than 40,000 students in Arizona helping them to achieve their full potential! We have consistently exceeded the national standards set by Jobs for America’s Graduates and has received the prestigious Five for Five Award every year since 2003. Currently, JAG is operating 30 programs throughout Arizona serving more than 1,300 students each year.


  • 1979 - Governor Pete du Pont of Delaware initiated a School-to-Work Transition Program as an answer to the high percentage of underemployed and unemployed high school graduates.
  • 1980 - Arizona adopted and implemented the Jobs for America’s Graduates School-to-Work Transition Model for high school seniors.
  • 1990 - Jobs for Arizona’s Graduates was established as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with the leadership of key business and community representatives.
  • 2005 – JAG receives the Arizona Department of Education’s Spotlight of Success Award.
  • 2006 & 2007 – JAG is recognized as a Best Practice for in-school interventions Department of Education and the Governors P20 Educational Council JAG.
  • 2015 - JAG is recognized by Governor Ducey at Peoria High School for achieving the "5 of 5" national outcomes 12-years in a row.
  • 2015 – JAG launches JAG Works, a community-based program, in partnership with the City of Tolleson.
  • 2016 - JAG launches several new high school programs with support from Governor Ducey, doubling the number of 11th and 12th grade students served by 2019.
  • 2019 – Launched JAG Works, a community-based program in the Peoria Community Center
  • 2020 – JAG Celebrates 40 years in Arizona, and prepares for another round of program growth!
AZ Tax Credit Funds
(602) 216-9503 I info@jagaz.org
10201 S. 51st Street, Ste 125, Phoenix, AZ 85044
Copyright 2020 -  Jobs for Arizona Graduates
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